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NHL Midseason Awards: Igor Shesterkin leads PHT Vezina Trophy voting

vezina shesterkin

NEW YORK, NY - OCTOBER 29: Igor Shesterkin #31 of the New York Rangers looks on against the Columbus Blue Jackets at Madison Square Garden on October 29, 2021 in New York City. (Photo by Jared Silber/NHLI via Getty Images)

NHLI via Getty Images

After looking at who’s in the Hart Trophy race, it’s time to turn our focus to the goaltenders. It’s a wide-open race and there are several names who have a real good chance at taken home the Vezina Trophy come NHL Awards time in June.

The Vezina is given to the “goalkeeper adjudged to be the best at this position.” This award is voted on annually by the league’s 32 general managers.

TOTAL BALLOTS (Points allocation: 10-7-5 for 1st-2nd-3rd)

1. Igor Shesterkin, Rangers - 47 (40-7-0)
2. Andrei Vasilevskiy, Lightning - 17 (10-7-0)
3. Frederik Andersen, Hurricanes - 12 (0-7-5)
Jack Campbell, Maple Leafs - 12 (0-7-5)
Juuse Saros, Predators - 12 (0-7-5)
Thatcher Demko, Canucks - 5 (0-0-5)
Sergei Bobrovsky, Panthers - 5 (0-0-5)

Adam Gretz, NHL writer

1. Igor Shesterkin, Rangers

2. Jack Campbell, Maple Leafs

3. Juuse Saros, Predators

There are a lot of really great choices here this season, and Frederik Andersen and Tristan Jarry both deserve some attention just outside of the top-three right now (along with Andrei Vasilevskiy, who is always here). But Shesterkin has been so dominant this season and such a game-changer for the Rangers I am not sure how it is anybody other than him right now.

Jake Abrahams, Managing Editor, NHL content

1. Andrei Vasilevskiy, Lightning
2. Igor Shesterkin, Rangers
3. Jack Campbell, Maple Leafs

No offense to Ranger fans or anyone else who believes Shesterkin has had the best season by a goalie thus far. You are not necessarily wrong. I just think that Vasilevskiy is a tier above every other goaltender in the NHL, and as long as his stats are in the same ballpark as the league leaders, he deserves the award. While Tampa does have a fantastic team in front of him, it is not the same juggernaut roster as the past couple seasons, and Vasilevskiy is in the mix to lead the league in wins for a 5th straight season.

James O’Brien, NHL writer

1. Igor Shesterkin, Rangers

2. Juuse Saros, Predators

3. Frederik Andersen, Hurricanes

If there’s any goalie that a successful team leans on as much as the Rangers lean on Shesterkin, it’s the Predators with Saros. In both cases, it’s tough to imagine how well those teams would function without splendid goaltending. To me, Shesterkin is on the top tier, Saros is on his own second level, and then there’s quite a few elite goalies on that next level. Andersen gets the third spot for now with a shockingly effective debut Hurricanes season (a rebound wasn’t out of the question, but one this strong?).

Sean Leahy, NHL writer

1. Igor Shesterkin, Rangers
2. Andrei Vasilevskiy, Lightning
3. Thatcher Demko, Canucks

The Rangers are in contention for the Metropolitan Division crown thanks in large part to their goaltender. Per Natural Stat Trick, he leads all netminders in 5-on-5 save percentage (.940); is first in goals saved above average (15.56); is second in high-danger save percentage (.873), and has posted three shutouts. It’s a breakout season from the man whom the franchise hoped would take the No. 1 job from Henrik Lundqvist for the next decade.

Michael Finewax, NBC Sports Edge Senior Hockey Writer/Editor

1. Igor Shesterkin, Rangers
2. Frederik Andersen, Hurricanes
3. Sergei Bobrovsky, Panthers

Shesterkin has been holding the Rangers in games despite New York’s so-so play according to the analytics. He has been on fire. Andersen has had a great comeback season after an injury-riddled 2020-21 season for Toronto. Bobrovsky is in the same boat as he has returned to form after a couple of poor seasons in Florida.